Are you feeling anxious about life after lockdown? It makes sense that the impending end of lockdown may be causing some to feel uncertain and ill-at-ease.
Post-lockdown anxiety is real and completely understandable. Returning to work is going to be a shock to the system - we’ve become used to working from home in our pyjamas, not having to make small talk as we traverse the office to get to the printer and have had our flatmate/significant other making up endless cups of tea.
Make no mistake, lockdown stress and lockdown anxiety were also most definitely a thing, but coping with stress and anxiety post-lockdown will possibly be a little trickier to navigate, given that we can’t retreat to our bed, cry to our mum on the phone in the middle of the day or run a bath to cheer ourselves up. Just as it was okay to feel stressed during lockdown, it is equally okay to feel uncertain about lockdown coming to an end.
Here are our top tips for beating anxiety as lockdown comes to an end:
1. Remember that all anxiety is temporary
Anxiety affects people in many different ways. What is important to remember, however, is that all anxiety is temporary. Remember the old adage “this too shall pass”? Well, that goes for the anxiety surrounding coming out of lockdown too. The human psyche has an amazing ability to adapt to its current circumstances and what seems scary now in prospect, will - more quickly than you can anticipate - become the new, new normal. It can also be helpful to remind yourself that anxious uncertainty has its roots in unconscious thought patterns that can, with a bit of conscious effort, be changed and rewritten.
Take it one day at a time
If the coronavirus has taught us anything, it’s that we have no idea what’s around the corner. We can’t predict what’s going to happen tomorrow, let alone next week or next month. We can’t even conceive of a next year right now! This can all feel incredibly overwhelming. The best - and only - thing we can do when things are so far out of our control is to focus on the here and now, to be present, and to do our best with what we have and where we are today. Ask yourself: “What can I do to reduce my anxiety today?” You may find that the answer is a walk, a short breathing exercise or meditation, a phone call to a friend or an afternoon baking your favourite sweet treat. Whatever answer surfaces for you, listen and heed what it has to say. Your intuition always knows what is best for you - you just need to take its advice.
3. Don’t be too hard on yourself
A sure-fire way to beat anxiety to the curb? Radical acceptance. Remind yourself that it is okay and completely normal to feel weird right now - we are in unprecedented times and your mind will be responding in unprecedented ways. Don’t beat yourself up and instead accept your feelings just as they are without trying to change them. Denying your feelings will only give them more strength. As they say, “what you resist, persists.” Change is afoot and while we’re in the process of realising what, exactly, that change looks like, go easy on yourself. You are not weak or inferior for feeling this way. And most importantly of all, you most certainly are not alone in feeling anxious about the current state of the world.
4. Re-establish familiar routines (but get rid of the ones that no longer serve you)
Whether you’re returning to the office after working from home for months on end, or have loved spending time with your nearest and dearest and are dreading this period coming to end, a good way to stem anxiety is to re-establish healthy routines. Whether that’s grabbing a daily flat-white from your favourite cafe, meditating before you leave the house, or refraining from drinking on a ‘school night’; a good routine will help you to feel grounded and get your head back to a place of ‘normality’. Having said this, this is also a great time to consider whether you’d like to let go of any aspects of your old routine. What was holding you back? Is there anything there that no longer serves you? Asking yourself these questions will allow you to move forward with a greater sense of clarity, purpose and wellbeing.
5. Support yourself with the right supplements
Taking the right supplements can be a quick and easy way to ease anxiety. LYMA contains patented adaptogen KSM-66 Ashwagandha®; a potent root extract that has been formulated to reduce anxiety and its associated symptoms, boost mood and enhance overall wellbeing. KSM-66 Ashwagandha® has also been clinically proven to enhance sleep quality which can have the knock-on effect of further reducing stress.
LYMA also contains powerful anti-inflammatory HydroCurc®. Underlying inflammation is frequently cited as a leading cause of anxiety . Formulated at 250mg in LYMA, HydroCurc® is the most bioavailable and effective recognised source of curcumin available on the market and is 250% more bioavailable than the curcumin found in turmeric or turmeric root extract.
So while the coming weeks and months are sure to prove challenging and unpredictable for most of us - man, woman, old or young - there are steps you can take to reduce your anxiety and mitigate your stress levels as the lock down comes to an end. By supplementing smartly, looking after your mind, and by not putting too much pressure on yourself to deal with things perfectly, you’ll be setting yourself up for an easier transition. For more stress-busting tips and tricks, take a look at these mindfulness hacks for overcoming uncertainty , and discover why you need more than just a good supply of vitamins if you want to improve your mental health.
Originally published Aug 28, 2020.